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Any experience in dealing with a return from a commission show that was a few months ago?  We had a patron buy a gift that she was sure her daughter would love.

Daughter decided it wasn't her style and wants to return it.  Problem, purchased 5 months ago, we've already paid the commission to the show for the purchase and remitted the sales tax collected to the state of CA.  Now the daughter wants a full refund, our jewelry just isn't her style.

We've had very few returns, and none before on shows that were commission shows and certainly none that weren't in the same calendar year so the sales tax issue hasn't been a problem in the past.

Any suggestions or advice on how you've dealt with this? I've already suggested her mom keep the jewelry since it obviously appealed to her, but received no interest in that suggestion.

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I have a 10 day return policy. Once the time is up, no returns. If you must return the jewelry I would charge a restocking fee equal to the sales tax and amount of commission you paid to the show. Going forward I would suggest a time limit for returns, that way you are covered.

 Five months!! Thats just too long, how many other businesses would return the money after five months. The only thing I would do is exchange it, if the owner truly does not like your style then she can use it for gifts for other people. The only other thing to do is have a return policy written on your receipts in the future. This girls sounds like she just wants cash, too bad, I have plenty of things I would love to return for cash.

The only reason I would make this deal is if the Mom were a good repeat customer with deep pockets. Explain all the reasons to the daughter, I have had my share of customers taking advantage of me ( unlike a store we are individuals who tend to be too nice ). Hold your ground Ruth.

All the  above options are good advise. My return policy is within 10 days for a refund. I agree with Courtney...sounds like the daughter just wants some quick cash.  Offer her an exchange for another item, or charge restocking fees as suggested above, ONLY if a good return customer. If not, hold your ground. but in all curiosity...Mom bought it...does Mom KNOW that daughter wants to return it for cash? Sounds a little shady to me.

Its a hard call.  It often isn't worth the angst of bad feelings/word of mouth if you don't refund when asked.

That being said, five months is a long time and I think if you explain that the mother would understand.  However if it was bought early and held onto for a special occasion eg. birthday, so she actually hasn't had it long at all, then providing it is returned in bought condition, I would probably suck up the fees and give a refund (offering an exchange first).  

Whilst I offer full, lifetime guarantees for workmanship,  I only offer a few days for change of mind or the item not meeting expectations when ordered online vs. reality.  If it is bespoke I don't offer that at all.


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